Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Loop Tour: <<< Back One Page  
These points of interest appear in the order of the trip you will take around the Loop Road
01 Sparks Lane 02 John Oliver Place 03 Primitive Baptist Church 04 Methodist Church 05 Hyatt Lane 06 Missionary Baptist Church  07 Rich Mountain Road 08 Cooper Road Trail 09 Elijah Oliver Place 10 Abrams Falls 11 Cable Mill Area 12 Henry Whitehead Place 13 Nature Trail  14 Dan Lawson Place 15 Tipton Place 16 Carter Shields Cabin.



Carter Shields Cabin


George Washington "Carter" Shields (1844-1924) bought this land and cabin from John Sparks in 1910. The cabin dates to 1830-40s. Shields lived in the cove until 1921.

Your journey is almost ended. Among the things you saw were part of the finest collection of log buildings in this country and the miscellaneous tools and trappings of an organic society. They tell you much, but not everything, about those people.

You saw little evidence of extraneous finery, for this was a culture of limited supply and minimum waste. But esthetic pleasure was not unknown or unappreciated. The craftsman found beauty in a well-shaped axe handle or smoothly-adzed parlor beam.

The woman expressed herself in a quilt or woven bed coverlet. The object itself was necessary; its beauty was not, but was there nonetheless. Design and function became one through understanding of the materials at ones fingertips.

A sense of community filled the Cove. For one hundred years life in the Cove proceeded at a pace rarely faster than a walk. This allowed time to see and hear the world one lived in. Cowbells in the pasture, the almost-silent chatter of a horse drawn mowing machine, the wind coming up, and the sun going down. A decent howdy while walking past a neighbors house. All were part of that life.

Community involvement on a personal level was a clearly understood obligation. It activated almost automatically in cases where family independence was inadequate.

A death in the community brought many people together quickly and efficiently. One made the coffin, another lined it with cloth, while others dug the grave. Common understanding got the deceased in the ground within twenty-four hours.

A house raising was another common effort. One man simply couldn't lift and lay the logs alone. When all of the materials were assembled on the site, neighbors pitched in to raise the building quickly.

These and other qualities of our ancestral society cannot be put on display. They can only be understood through deliberate contemplation. We leave this last little cabin to your imagination. Rebuild, refurnish, and re-people it in your own mind, and let it say to you whatever it will..


Submitted Photographs
Click Thumbnails for Enlargements




Photo by Chuck Tipton